The Millions Interview

April 24, 2012

Paradise Regained: An Interview with Lauren Groff 5

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“I am in love with the gorgeous, elastic, leaping human brain that shuffles and connects disparate pieces of the world into a coherent story.”

April 19, 2012

On Point: David Rees, The Proust of Pencil Sharpeners 14

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I’m surprised to hear that you communists overseas are using your own individual sharpeners in classrooms. It’s a very Ayn-Randian position to take. “I’ve got my pencil sharpener, fuck you if you can’t afford a pencil sharpener! Sharpen your pencil with your bootstrap!”

April 10, 2012

A History of Violence: An Interview with Eugene Cross 2

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“I was hellbent on writing stories that took place anywhere but where I grew up. I wrote stories set in the swanky social circles of Manhattan, or pieces set in Hawaii or Texas or the underbelly of LA or even, God forgive me, stories set nowhere… I thought that most people wouldn’t find where I was from interesting enough.”

April 4, 2012

Overnight Sensation? Edith Pearlman on Fame and the Importance of Short Fiction 11

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People are made by the books they read and I think I am finished. That is to say, my making is finished.

March 20, 2012

Plot, Rhyme, and Conspiracy: Hari Kunzru Colludes with His Readers 1

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“I have a sort of dark past as a technology journalist and I’ve always been interested in communication systems, both as technological artifacts and as the building blocks of social life. In my book I’ve become very interested in the ways that we’re enmeshed in these systems.”

March 13, 2012

You Call that a Punctuation Mark?! The Interrobang Celebrates its 50th Birthday 14

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Readers, have you seen any good interrobangs lately? I sat down with Penny Speckter, the 92-year-old widow of the mark’s creator, to talk about her memories of her husband, his passion for typography, and about her own experiences as a woman working in the heady world of advertising during the Mad Men era.

February 27, 2012

Scott Donaldson on the “Impossible Craft” of Writing Biography 10

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“If you fall in love with your subject, you can so identify with your subject that you lose something of your own self to it. The first two biographers of Malcolm Lowry who was a suicide, they both killed themselves. Maybe they had that inclination to begin with. But that can happen.”

February 17, 2012

Crime Pays: Jo Nesbø Talks about Killing Harry Hole and the Best Job in the World 17

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I had worked as a taxi driver, a stockbroker. A fishing trawler. I had many kinds of jobs. And I know this is the greatest job that you can have. To actually get up in the morning and people are paying you to do what you really want to do. To come up with these stories.

January 31, 2012

Lethal Language: Ben Marcus Urges Writers to March on the Enemy 11

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Accessibility is such a strange, sad measure of the writing I love. Dora the Explorer is accessible. The Unconsoled is not.

January 27, 2012

The Millions Interview: Bradford Morrow 2

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While evil is obviously universal, various forms of evil portrayed in The Uninnocent do seem to me to be distinctly American. An unstable idealism that sometimes erupts into irrevocable acts of violence or crime does reside in the hearts of many of these characters.